History of Taylor County, Iowa: from the earliest historic times to 1910 by  Frank E. Crosson. Chicago, The S.J. Clarke Publishing Co. 1910
(biographicals transcribed by Linda Kestner: lfkestner3@msn.com)
Page 456
Many who start out in life as Francis Edward Crouch did - a poor young man - fail because they lack the mental mastery of affairs or because they do not have the power of physical endurance.  Mr. Crouch, however, possesses a character that makes him strong, forceful, determined and aggressive, and it has been these qualities that have enabled him to push his way on to success until today he stands foremost among the landowners of Taylor county, his possessions now aggregating five hundred and forty acres in one body, located in Gay township.
Mr. Crouch was born in Adams County, Illinois, September 4, 1847, a son of A. D. and Elizabeth (Hughes) Crouch, the former a native of New York state, while the latter was born in Illinois.  A. D. Crouch was but a young lad when he left the Empire state and took up his abode in the west, his location being Hancock county, Illinois, where he opened up a farm and spent his remaining days, his death occurring there in 1885.
Francis E. Crouch was reared on the home farm in Hancock county, Illinois, remaining with his father until he was twenty-three years old, during which time he assisted largely in the operation of the home place, and it is through the knowledge he then acquired that has come his success in later life.  While still a resident of Hancock county Mr. Crouch was married, February 28, 1871, and the lady of his choice being Miss Mary Etta Boren, who was born in Adams county, Illinois, and reared in Hancock county, that state.
Following his marriage, Mr. Crouch engaged in farming in Hancock county but in 1874 came to Taylor county, Iowa, and for three years operated a tract of rented land.  In the meantime he had bought land in Page county, Iowa, and, disposing of that tract, he then invested his money in one hundred and sixty acres of raw land in Gay township, Taylor county.  He at once undertook the task of breaking the land and preparing it for cultivation, and later he added another tract of one hundred and sixty acres, also wild land.  As time passed he added improvements and made his farm a valuable property.  He kept adding to his holdings as his finances permitted until his place now embraces five hundred and sixty acres, all in one body.  He also bought and improved forty acres for a niece, which he farmed in connection with his own land.  On his place stands a good country residence, supplied with all modern conveniences (page 461) and accessories, two good barns and ample outbuildings for the shelter of grain and stock.  He also set out an orchard, which is in bearing, and everything about his place is kept in neat and attractive condition.  In addition to general farming Mr. Crouch also raised from one to two carloads of hogs and from one to three carloads of cattle annually, and his farm is still well stocked with high grade animals.
In 1900, wishing to take life more easy, Mr. Crouch purchased five acres of land in Blockton, on which he erected a fine house and here he has since made his home.  He had abandoned the actual work of the farm but still gives personal supervision to his landed interests, preferring that his time should at least be partially occupied as idleness is utterly foreign to his nature.  In December, 1906, Mr. Crouch was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife, her remains being interred in the Blockton cemetery.
In politics, a democrat, he has always supported that party when national issues are involved but at local elections he casts an independent ballot.  While living in Gay township he served as township trustee but otherwise held no public office.  He is a member of the Methodist church, to which his wife also belonged, and she was an active worker and a teacher in the Sunday school.  Coming to Taylor county when much of the land was still undeveloped and uncultivated, Mr. Crouch took advantage of the opportunities which here presented and bought much of his land at a low figure.  Owing to the settled condition of the country at the present time and to the valuable improvements he has made on his property it has greatly increased in value.  He has seen the county grow into one of the prosperous districts of southwestern Iowa, and has borne his full share in this work.  He worked hard in his earlier years and now in the evening of life can enjoy his many comforts and feel that his labors have not been in vain.  His interests are thoroughly identified with those of Taylor county and at all times he is ready to lend his aid in cooperation to any movement calculated to benefit this section or advance its wonderful development.